GODFREY – Amanda Kay Werner, of Wood River, loves connecting with each of the students she teaches through L&C’s College for Life program.
“I want them to love coming to college, so I strive to provide the best experience I can for them,” she said. “The students are the best part of my job. I love interacting with them, teaching to their interests, getting to know them and watching them shine as they give back to the class what they have to offer.”
Werner has been teaching with College for Life for six years.
This year, she’s working to expand the program to L&C’s N.O. Nelson Campus in Edwardsville. Once it opens in the fall, she will continue teaching on both campuses.
Classes include everything from math and current events to digital photography, scrapbooking, drama, sewing and self-advocacy.
“College for Life is student interest-driven,” Werner said. “There are a variety of classes they can choose from and no two classes are ever taught the same way. The program gives students an outlet for their creativity. They have an opportunity to become more independent, continue learning and advocate for themselves and others. It’s fun getting to go to college, taking classes of your choice, meeting new friends and participating in college activities.”
Werner grew up in a large family that fostered a love of helping others from an early age. When she was 11, her family moved to Guatemala and shortly after began Agua Viva Children’s Home.
“I loved caring for the children in the home for the seven years I lived there,” she said. “All of this transferred into my love for teaching.”
Before coming to Lewis and Clark, she worked as a home school teacher for more than a decade, and with grade school students who had learning and mental disabilities for several years.
Werner holds a Bachelor of Science in Elementary Education/Special Education from Taylor University and a Master of Science in Education (Special Education) from Indiana University.
For more information on College for Life and other programs for students with disabilities, visit www.lc.edu/access.